Sign in to follow this  
Slick

Bush Beast Train Salvaging

9 posts in this topic

So i've been adding my own commentary to this little thread on Facebook for a few days now. For those wondering, a group of fans are attempting to save the Bush Beast trains that originally ran in the now defunct Wonderland Sydney. You can check out the "gofundme" campaign here.

Now rather then bashing my head into the keyboard I wanted to gather some thoughts on the matter, so what does everyone actually think of this campaign? Have you donated? Kudos if you have, by the way. And if you haven't, has there been something stopping you?

For me the idea seemed to be filled to the brim with many pie in the sky dreams and visions for me to feel comfortable throwing some money at (especially when there's no concrete plan in place apart from "BUY ALL THE TRAINS!")

For more clarity, I asked:

i've yet to see a real definitive plan or strategy on how they're going to be restored, how they'll be shown, what availability they will have to the public, what kind of building (if any) they'll be housed inside of, the budget for said building inc. monthly rates (electricity, council etc. etc.) to keep the idea and the museum alive, how much space of the total building space these will take up, what that building will look like, how many people will it take, once restored, to keep them maintained, costs for moving the trains into said building, costs for having track made long enough to place the trains on which follows into "will you restore the entire wheel bogeys? Are the current assemblies in good condition?"

Which was met with:

instead of being the devils advocate, put yr hand in yr pocket & donate so all the issues yr worried about will become a reality!

and

I think u just need to shut up benjamin seriously ur the only one here with an issue as though ur pissed off u never thought of the idea urself!?

Nostalgia fan rage? Am I being too harsh? Feel free to let me know what you think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you are well entitled to ask those questions given you would be donating towards their salvation. I know I would much rather donate knowing they were going to be in a proper museum type exhibit set up as they would have been on track than sitting in some steel shed on concrete with little restoration completed.

Personally I think, from the replies you have posted it sounds they are either a) clueless to answer as they have no current action plan past getting the trains B) looking to make a quick buck and using this as a chance to do that or c) threatened by the fact that there might be someone out there that has a better idea or grasp on the ideas that they should have come up with. (Probably all 3 to be honest.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair Ben, you've received some quite reasonable replies as well as those that you quoted above.

I totally get where you're coming from - Despite being very involved with Chris and his ideas for the site and the 'museum', I myself haven't donated to this cause, despite my hope that they will be saved.

Although not a 'formal' plan, Chris has answered your questions already (you might have missed it amongst all the other garbage), and it sounds like he's got a fair idea of what he's going to do.

As for the location - the place that the trains are housed is private property owned by a family who are 'collectors hoarders'. They themselves collected several wonderland pieces (including the front entry sign) when the park closed. They share a similar passion for the park and were willing to house the trains and open their property for the fans. I think they've already demonstrated that kind of goodwill.

I would like to see some sort of agreement in writing - the establishment of a cooperative society (basically a non-profit type thing) where a person can buy a share in the co-op entitling them to use the facilities. I'll have a chat to Chris.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair Ben, you've received some quite reasonable replies as well as those that you quoted above.

I totally get where you're coming from - Despite being very involved with Chris and his ideas for the site and the 'museum', I myself haven't donated to this cause, despite my hope that they will be saved.

Although not a 'formal' plan, Chris has answered your questions already (you might have missed it amongst all the other garbage), and it sounds like he's got a fair idea of what he's going to do.

As for the location - the place that the trains are housed is private property owned by a family who are 'collectors hoarders'. They themselves collected several wonderland pieces (including the front entry sign) when the park closed. They share a similar passion for the park and were willing to house the trains and open their property for the fans. I think they've already demonstrated that kind of goodwill.

I would like to see some sort of agreement in writing - the establishment of a cooperative society (basically a non-profit type thing) where a person can buy a share in the co-op entitling them to use the facilities. I'll have a chat to Chris.

Agreed there AlexB, and I did see their answers, it just seemed to be like their was a lot of ambitious dreams and not a whole lot of nitty gritty and actual happening. I'm costing up a bar at the moment, and relative to all new businesses, it's never as easy as just throwing up some walls. There's just so much costing involved, i'd even say just getting those trains moved would be a fortune, and then getting them ready for display, let alone all the other costs are what throw up alarm bells for me and make me want to wait before pledging any money. To be brutal, I don't think they quite understand the moneypit this could turn into, and without any prep, they might only get a small way into the idea before falling short, and that'll be a drama no one wants. Your idea though is certainly very sound though, in terms of a co-operative society. I like that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I guess thats the big difference though - both concepts share a lot of similarities, but this idea, as opposed to your bar is different in that your bar has an expectation of profit, and has to be able to show how you will make one, to repay your creditors.

THe people funding this exercise are 'donating' as such, for a common cause. there isn't an expectation of profit from it, and people are throwing in their own assistance (in whatever manner they can) to realise it.

A big difference in the two is also demonstrated by what you're saying about getting the trains moved - sure, commercially, contracting a transport company to crane them onto a flatbed, drive them to the site, and then crane them off would be costly, but in reality - someone who supports the cause and owned a truck with a crane already fitted offered up their services to achieve the goal.

I still think a formal plan with a structured organisation is the way to go, and you (like me and others) have every right to withhold our own investment into the concept until we can see the benefits to be had, but you are holding them to a 'commercial' standard in some of your examples and questions, when its more an 'enthusiast' group with no expectation of commercial gain.

Sure - they may not succeed, but i'm reminded of a crackpot idea on these very boards once raised by someone we don't see very often anymore - called Zordmaker - you may recall he lobbied (unsuccessfully) to have the bush beast heritage listed, to prevent the bulldozers. His intention was for it to continue to operate, and therefore continue to generate an income, and his lack of planning in that respect was his downfall. This concept on the otherhand doesn't intend on trying to generate income, only to receive donations to cover costs... and this is a very big difference.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I definitely see your point there AlexB. You're right, I'm holding them up to a commercial standard, it's just the way I see these things personally and how I relate my own experiences as to what I think works/doesn't work in the world.

And I do agree. Some structure might atleast be the way to go so that the less enthusiastic fans (like, say, in Kickstarter, who offer $1-5 instead of $20-200) will feel more comfortable and donate en masse (atleast theoratically.)

It's worth pointing out that the parts that I quoted were from different members. The guy running the WLS show, from what I can see, is a decent enough bloke with his heart in the right place.

UPDATE: So the idea is being incorporated and taking a positive turn forward. This is actually quite exciting. Kudos to the WLS team for hearing the community at large out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For those not following the running commentary on facebook, the site owner administrator has announced his intentions to form a 'historical society' which is essentially the co-operative mentioned earlier.

The organisation will be legitimised on paper and have a much better 'formalised' standing within the community. So if you were hesitant chucking in a couple dollars to some unknown random, once established this society will be a formalised committee capable of issuing receipts and essentially legitimising the purpose of the donation.

I don't think it gives them any 'tax deductible' status - you wouldn't be able to claim it or anything, but it would be a non-profit organisation, and a good cause.

Once established, I fully intend on making a donation within my means to do so.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Parkz Crew

    Support Parkz... join the Crew for:

    • Ad-banner free viewing
    • Parkz Crew profile badge
    • Extended editing
    • See who's liked your posts
    • Purchase discounts

    Join Now from $20/yr

  • Recently Browsing

    No registered users viewing this page.